BryanJohnHerta is a former American racing driver and the owner of the Bryan Herta Autosport team which competes in various racing categories. He was born on 23rd of May 1970 in Warren, Michigan.
The 1993 Indy Lights champion
Herta began his career in the lower ranks of formula racing. In 1991, he was Barber Saab Pro Series champion what opened him the doors of Indy Lights Championship. In his first year in the series, Herta was a driver of Landford Racing team. He finished 5th overall after scoring a win in Toronto. He also was 2nd in Cleveland and Laguna Seca, while at Nazareth Speedway he was 3rd.
Those results weren’t unnoticed and in 1993 Bryan moved to Tasman Motorsport. He dominated the championship by winning 7 out of 12 races and having other three podium finishes. At the end of the season, Herta had 213 points on his account, while the runner-up Franck Freon had 122.
Move to CART Indycar Series
After a brilliant season, Herta graduated to CART Series and signed with A.J. Foyt Enterprises team. Unfortunately, he wasn’t able to finish the season. During the test session in Toronto, he had a horrible crash and suffered a serious injury which forced his to sit out rest of the year.
Bryan Herta, 1995
Bryan returned in the driving seat in 1995 with Chip Ganassi Racing. That was the season marked with too many retirements and Herta finished 20th in the championship. Despite many troubles, there were a couple of bright moments, like 2nd place in Cleveland and 5th place at Mid-Ohio.
Four years with Team Rahal
After he left Chip Ganassi Racing at the end of 1995, Herta secured another drive with the top team – Rahal Racing. He spent four seasons with the team and established himself as one of the series’ best drivers on the road courses. His first year with a new team went relatively well. Herta finished 2nd at Laguna Seca and Michigan before taking 8th place in the final standings. The following year wasn’t as good as Bryan dropped to 11th position with only one podium finish – 3rd place in Cleveland.
Bryan Herta, Team Rahal, 1998
The season of 1998 was the best in Herta’s career, especially after surviving a scary crash at Road America. He won the race at Laguna Seca what was his maiden victory in the series. He also was 3rd in Long Beach and Portland before taking the 8th place in the Drivers’ championship. In 1999, his final year with Team Rahal, Bryan again won at Laguna Seca and took the 3rd place at Long Beach, but in the final classification, he dropped to the 12th position.
From 2000 to 2003, Herta changed many teams. His only full-time season was 2001 when he was driving for Forsythe Championship Racing. The 3rd place in Cleveland was the highlight of the year which Bryan finished 22nd overall.
IRL IndyCar Series debut
In 2003, Herta signed with Andretti Green Racing team. He was set for debut at Indianapolis but missed the race because of the injury. However, he quickly recovered and in his third start in the series managed to win the race at Kansas. Later in the year Bryan added other three podium finishes and was ranked 13th overall.
Bryan Herta, Andretti Green Racing, 2004
The following year was slightly better. Herta progressed to the 9th position overall, with the 2nd place in Chicago as the best result of the season. In 2005, Bryan finished 8th what was his best result in the series. He won the race at Michigan and finished 3rd in the Indianapolis 500. His last year in the IndyCar wasn’t brilliant as Herta dropped to the 12th place, failing to score a single podium finish.
Sports cars racing career
Herta left the IndyCar Series but stayed with Andretti Racing in 2007. He competed in the LMP2 class of the American Le Mans Series. Herta already had some experience in endurance racing as he raced with Panoz Motor Sports in 2002. The same year he recorded his only appearance in 24 Hours of Le Mans but ended with a retirement on lap 90.
Bryan at 2002 Le Mans 24h
In 2007, Herta was driving an Acura alongside Marino Franchitti. They scored a class win at Sebring, 2nd place in Texas and 3rd place at Mosport Park before finishing 7th overall. He stayed with a team in 2008 but after the fourth race of the season decided to retire as a driver.
Herta as a team owner
In 2009, Bryan Herta founded his own team which started to compete in the Indy Lights. Today, the team is competing in the IndyCar Series and Global Rallycross Series. Bryan Herta Autosport has partnered with Toronto-based Bowen Motorsports since 2012.
Dan Wheldon won the Indy 500 for Bryan Herta Autosport
The biggest team’s achievements so far are Dan Wheldon triumph in Indianapolis 500 in 2011, in only its second Indycar Series start. In 2016 Herta partnered with Michael Andretti as a co-owner and won the 2016 Indianapolis 500 with a car driven by a rookie Alexander Rossi.